In a powerful, painful and uplifting interview, the band Eagles of Death Metal has opened up about the horrific experience of the Paris attacks and the massacre at the Bataclan theater.
Be warned, there is some upsetting footage of the attacks included in the video.
Vice Magazine had worked with the band many times and reached out to them for an interview following the attacks on November 13 that left at least 90 of their fans dead. They sat down with co-founders Joshua Homme and Jesse Hughes, bassist Matt McJunkins, sound engineer Shawn London, guitarist Eden Galindo, and drummer Julian Dorio.
Galindo remembered hearing the first gunshots from the stage. “At first, I thought it was the PA cracking up, and then I realized real quick that it wasn’t.”
The 26-minute interview includes harrowing accounts of the band members watching the gunmen and trying to escape. Bassist Matt McJunkins was trapped in a small room with fans, some of them wounded, with only a bottle of champagne to use as a weapon. He remembers the fans banding together to help each other and barricade the doors.
Homme, who was not present in Paris but was a great support to his bandmates following the tragedy, said that he’d been writing down the names of the victims to try to come to terms with what happened. “We have a podium right now because we’re in the band. But we represent the fans that did not make it, the people that did not make it, whose stories may never get told.”
Hughes, clearly emotional throughout the interview, ended with a word of hope. “I don’t want to spend my life trying to appease or not appease assholes. I want to spend my life smiling with my friends and entertaining them. I cannot wait to get back to Paris. I can’t wait to play. I want to come back. I want to be the first band to play in the Bataclan when it opens back up. Because I was there when it went silent for a minute. Our friends went there to see rock and roll, and died. I’m gonna go back there and live.”
Eagles of Death Metal encourage their fans and supporters to reach out to them on their Facebook page.